SC Sets Aside Life Ban Imposed On Cricketer Sreesanth and has asked BCCI To Take Fresh Decision On Punishment.

Partly allowing the appeal of cricketer S Sreesanth, the Supreme Court today set aside the life ban imposed by the Board of Control of Cricket in India(BCCI) on him for indulging in spot-fixing during 2013 Indian Premier League. The Court has directed the disciplinary committee of BCCI to take a decision on the quantum of punishment within 3 months from today.

Significantly, the Court has not disturbed the findings of guilt made by the disciplinary committee against the Kerala based cricketer. Also Read – Life Ban Imposed By BCCI Unfair: Sreesanth Tells SC It was on March 1 that the bench of Justices Ashok Bhushan and K M Joseph reserved judgment on Sreesanth’s appeal against the judgment of the High Court of Kerala, which had affirmed the life ban imposed by BCCI.

In August 2017, a single-judge bench of the Kerala High Court had lifted the life ban imposed on Sreesanth by BCCI and had set aside all proceedings against him initiated by the board. Within two months, a division bench of the high court restored the ban allowing appeal filed by the BCCI against the single-judge bench’s order.

The 35 year old fast bowler contended that life ban on him was “completely unfair” and Delhi Police “continuously tortured” him in custody to extract confession of his involvement in the 2013 IPL spot-fixing scandal. Sreesanth, who was arrested and later discharged by a trial court here in July 2015 in a criminal case related to the alleged spot-fixing, claimed he had to confess his involvement in the alleged crime as police tortured him in custody and threatened to implicate his family in the case. “In the context of facts and manner in which these things have happened, this court should consider that it (life ban on Sreesanth by BCCI) is unfair.

He has suffered for the last five-six years. People want him to play cricket. He was extremely loyal to BCCI,” senior advocate Salman Khurshid, appearing for Sreesanth, told the bench. Khurshid said it was not established that any spot-fixing was done in the match played between Indian Premier League teams Rajasthan Royals and Kings XI Punjab in Mohali in May 2013 and there was no evidence that the cricketer received any money for this. “The team (Rajasthan Royals) and its owners were banned for two years only. It is completely unfair that this (life ban) has happened with him (Sreesanth),” Khurshid said.

On the issue of his confession before police about his involvement in the alleged crime, the lawyer said, “The confession was due to continuous torture by Delhi Police. According to Sreesanth, police had threatened to implicate his family if he does not confess to the crime.” Khurshid argued the “standard of proof” against Sreesanth was nothing compared to the serious allegations levelled against him and the recorded telephonic conversations were not provided to him during the inquiry proceedings by BCCI’s disciplinary committee.

Referring to the recorded telephonic conversations, he said there was no evidence to substantiate the claim that Sreesanth had received money for conceding 14 runs in an over during the IPL match in Mohali. Khurshid argued that as per allegations, Sreesanth was supposed to concede 14 runs in an over but he gave away 13 runs and the commentary during the match clearly reflected he had not bowled loose deliveries in that over. He said it was alleged that Sreesanth tucked a towel in his trouser to give an indication to bookies before the start of the over but the fact was he had used towel during matches since 2009. The lawyer argued that Sreesanth used a towel during the match as weather was humid in Mohali and he was using the towel to wipe out sweat from his palm which is usual for bowlers. Khurshid said nowhere in the world, life ban has been imposed on a cricketer like this.

 

BCCI response on Sreesanth’s plea : SC

The Supreme Court on Monday sought a response from BCCI on controversial cricketer S Sreesanth’s plea challenging the life ban imposed on him by the apex cricket body.

A bench comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud asked the Board of Control for Cricket in India and two office bearers of its Committee of Administrators (CoA) to file their responses within four weeks.

The court, however, refused to grant any interim relief sought by senior advocate Salman Khurshid, representing the cricketer, that he may be allowed to play.

Sreesanth, who had been absolved in the IPL spot-fixing case, was successful when he filed a plea before the single judge bench of the Kerala High Court challenging the life ban imposed on him by BCCI.

However, the division bench of the high court had set aside the single judge bench and upheld the ban.

The cricketer has now challenged the high court verdict in the apex court.

Asaram doesn’t need any surgery

Self-styled ‘godman’ Asaram, who is in jail since his arrest in August, 2013 in a rape case, does not need any surgery and his aliments can be managed through medicines, a report submitted by a panel of AIIMS doctors to the Supreme Court said today.

A bench of justices T S Thakur and Adarsh Kumar Goel, referring to the findings of the panel, said, “The opinion of half-a-dozen doctors of AIIMS is that at present, any surgical intervention is not required. He can be treated in OPD. Now what remains?”

Senior advocate Salman Khurshid, appearing for Asaram, however, sought some time to go through the report.

The bench then fixed the matter on January 20 for hearing and asked its Registry to supply the copies of the report to the parties, including the accused.

It also asked the counsel for Asaram to ensure that the expenses incurred by the Rajasthan police in getting him examined at AIIMS here are paid.

Earlier, the jailed ‘godman’ was brought to Delhi by the Rajasthan police to undergo various tests at AIIMS to ascertain veracity of his claim that he was unwell and be granted bail on medical ground.

During the previous hearing, the bench had said that there was no medical urgency to grant bail to him and he cannot be given special treatment.

It had refused to pass any order on how 72-year-old Asaram is to be brought from Jodhpur jail to the national capital, saying that it is for the state government to decide on it.

The apex court had on October 15 directed AIIMS Director to set up a medical board to review medical reports and if required clinically examine Asaram to ascertain whether interim bail should be granted to him in the Jodhpur rape case.

Charges have been framed against Asaram for rape, criminal conspiracy and other offences by a Jodhpur court in connection with alleged sexual exploitation of a minor girl in his ashram in Jodhpur.

The District and Sessions Court had retained all the charges slapped by the police, except Section 26 of Juvenile Justice Act related to child labour against Asaram and his aides and co-accused Sanchita Gupta alias Shilpi and Sharad Chandra.

Charges have been framed under sections 342 (wrongful confinement), 354A (sexual harassment), 370(4) (trafficking), 376(2)f (rape on a woman when she is under twelve years of age), 506 (criminal intimidation), 509/34 and 120 (B) (criminal conspiracy) of IPC